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MOS-related enlistment bonuses severely reduced

Dec. 30, 2011 - 12:02PM   |   Last Updated: Dec. 30, 2011 - 12:02PM  |  
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Seasonal bonuses and other special offerings remain on the Army's active component recruiting incentive menu, but regular MOS-related enlistment bonuses have been sharply curtailed.

The latest update to the active component enlistment incentive program was issued Dec. 19.

It only authorizes bonuses for six of the 139 MOS that in the past have qualified for enlistment incentives.

Specialties targeted for bonuses are 09L (interpreter/translator for Pushtu and Persian), 12D (diver), 18X (Special Forces), 35 (cryptologic linguist), 68K (laboratory specialist) and 89D (explosive ordnance disposal specialist).

Bonuses range from $2,000 to $40,000, depending on the MOS and length of enlistment.

The high-end payment of $40,000 goes to qualified applicants in MOS 09L, the same specialty that qualifies for re-enlistment bonuses of up to $90,000.

The 2012 enlistment bonus program supports a recruiting campaign designed to generate 58,000 enlistments, some 6,000 fewer than last year.

Given the impending drawdown in the size of the Army, and a tough jobs market in the civilian sector, enlistments will be highly competitive this year.

"You have to aspire to come into the Army today," said Maj. Gen. David Mann, commanding general of Army Recruiting Command, told Army Times.

"You've got to complete high school. You've got to be physically fit, you've got to stay out of trouble, and you've got to show a genuine desire to join the Army."

Seasonal bonuses of $2,000 to $10,000 remain available to selected applicants who agree to ship to basic training early, while bonuses of $1,000 to $2,000 are available to applicants with college credits.

Special bonuses also remain available to enlistees who complete Ranger or airborne training.

For specific information about enlistment options, contact an Army recruiter.

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